April 15, 2003

THE INDEPENDENT'S Yasmin Alibhai-Brown is

THE INDEPENDENT'S Yasmin Alibhai-Brown is offended:

It is not just the vulgar, premature bawdiness of pro-war triumphalists which I find revolting. It is that they accuse anti-war people of being uncaring about the people of Iraq, and the lack of concern that these proponents of war show for the bodies of the killed and those maimed and injured by their invasion.


Yes, Saddam Hussein is gone and, for Iraqis (except the innocent families of his supporters), that is deliverance. But at what cost - present and future? And with what consequences - foreseen and unplanned?

Always with the plans. Lefties don't get it. You can't plan a free society. Yasmin would apparently prefer Saddam's "plans" to the chaos of a citizenry happily running around unencumbered by electrodes.

I wrote that the Americans were receiving no "overwhelming welcome" and that is still true. That statue in Baghdad was pulled down by US troops with around 200 Iraqis as extras. Warniks feel vindicated and are foolishly cheering with all of Rupert Murdoch's outlets. But that is no reason to subscribe to such delusions.

Let's indulge Yasmin for a moment, and assume that her figure of 200 is accurate. What does she think it means when 200 people do something that only a couple of months earlier would have had them all killed?

In 1970, I was on the streets of Kampala with hundreds of thousands of others screaming and dancing for joy the day Idi Amin came into power, placed there by the US, the UK and Israel. Mobs are not dependable nor good at foresight when momentous changes take place.

Depends on the mob, depends on the changes. (By the way, wasn't this "mob" described only a few words earlier as being only 200 people?) I didn't notice Yasmin dismissing the anti-war mobs for their lack of foresight.

The scenes of bedlam are going to be very useful to the occupation because they will enable the US to "reluctantly" impose rule over barbaric natives (who by that time will be begging for it in ever greater numbers) ever the reason for imperialism. We are back to the days of the scramble for Africa when colonial white powers took over countries to "protect and civilise" them.

That is exactly what the colonial imperialist Robert Fisk has been urging. If The Independent was the White House, this might be described as a "rift".

The US regime says it wants a "democratic" Iraq but with leaders it approves of; that it wants a free-market economy and that it wants the oil to pay for all the devastation ... What if the Iraqis don't want the exile puppets imposed democratically?

Then chances are that they won't vote for them and they won't get them. Leaders are not "imposed" democratically.

What if they decide that to rebuild they would rather have a social-democratic model with a partly managed economy, especially when it comes to the management of oil? Are they free to do this? Of course not.

Depends on who they vote for, I suppose. If the Social-Democratic Partly Managed Economy Party gets the most votes, they'll win. Yasmin is getting a little ahead of events here; we as yet don't know what form an Iraqi government will take.

Finally, those people with newly found concern for the Iraqi people, where were they for the past 13 years ... What do pro-war people say about the effects of depleted uranium?

We say: what effects? And then we say: goodbye, crazy lady.

Posted by Tim Blair at April 15, 2003 02:39 AM